My friend, Chintan, is just starting six months of heavy chemotherapy. You have already sent him such beautiful messages for his meditation while passing through this. Now, Osho, do you have some jokes for him too?
Prem Garima, Chintan is certainly passing through a difficult stage, but everybody has to finally pass through the difficult stage of death.
Only a meditator is capable of passing through it as if it is a joke. He can pass through it laughing and singing, because he knows that the fire cannot burn and the death cannot destroy him. There is no sword that can cut him.
He belongs to the eternal life.
Once a small glimpse of the eternity is achieved, there is no life which can be destroyed by anything. It can be removed from one form into another, but death cannot do more than that — just the changing of the house.
To the non-meditator death is the end, to the meditator, a beginning. It is a new beginning, a fresh beginning, freed from the old rotten body, the old mind. It is a resurrection; every death is a resurrection. But if you don’t know it, you will die unconsciously without experiencing the beauty of resurrection. If you can die consciously, death is only a door into a new life on a higher plane. But to die consciously, one has to live consciously. You cannot manage to die consciously without a long, meditative, conscious life. Only a conscious life is rewarded with a conscious death — it is a reward, but only to the conscious man. To the unconscious man, it is the end to all his efforts, ambitions, desires. There is only darkness ahead, not a single light and no possibilities left.
Death simply takes away the whole future.
Naturally, the unconscious man is immensely afraid and deeply trembling, knowing that death is coming closer every day. Since your birth the only thing that has been certain is death; everything else is uncertain and accidental. Only death is not accidental; it is an absolute certainty. There is no way to avoid it or dodge it. It will catch hold of you in the right moment at the right place.
I have always loved the beautiful Sufi story…
A king dreams in the night that a dark shadow is putting her hand on his shoulder. He looks back. He is horrified. It is just a dark shadow, but the shadow speaks and says, “There is no need to be worried. I have just come to inform you — it is not routine; you are a great king; it is an exception — otherwise I never come to inform anybody. I come without any information.”
The king said, “But who are you?”
The dark shadow laughed and said, “I am your death, and be prepared. Tomorrow, as the sun will be setting, I am going to come to you.”
Naturally, this nightmare woke him up. Even after he was awake, knowing well that it was only a dream, he was trembling and perspiring. And his heart was beating so loudly he could hear it himself. He immediately called the council of all his wise men, and particularly the royal astrologers, prophets, and told them the dream. He asked them the meaning of it — is it true that death is going to happen? The astrologers may be able to figure it out.
The wise men, the philosophers, the astrologers, the prophets, all started arguing about the dream.
Perhaps it was the first dream analysis! But they could not come to any conclusion, just as they cannot come to any conclusion today. All the dream analysts, the so-called psychoanalysts, differ in their interpretations. You take the same dream to all and you will get different conclusions about the dream. You will be more confused than ever.
And so was the situation of the king from the middle of the night till the morning; he became more and more confused because everybody was saying something different. And when the sun started rising, the old man who used to serve the king… He was not only a servant, he had helped the king from his very childhood. He had taken care of him, because his mother had died and his father had appointed the man to take care of the child because he was his most trustworthy bodyguard. So the king respected him almost like his father.
The old man said, whispered in his ear, “These great thinkers and philosophers and astrologers have argued for centuries and they have never come to any conclusion; do you think they will come to any conclusion within twelve hours? Forget it; that is not possible. These are the people who know only how to argue; they never come to any conclusion. They argue well but the question is not the beauty of the argument, the question is what is the conclusion of all your philosophies? There is no conclusion at all. No two philosophers agree with each other.”
The king asked him, “Then what do you propose?”
He said, “My understanding is let them discuss; there is no harm. But you take our fastest horse and get away as far as possible from the palace. It is dangerous to be at this place, for at least the coming twelve hours. After the sun has set, you can start turning back, but not before that.” It looked practical. The old man said, “These people can go on arguing; there is no need to stop them. If they come to any conclusion, I will follow you immediately. The best way is towards Damascus, another capital of another kingdom. So I will know where to find you, to give you their conclusion. I will come behind you.”
The king was convinced by the old man. He left all those great philosophers discussing, and slipped quietly out of the palace with the best horse he had. The whole day the horse was running as fast as possible. They did not stop to eat or even to drink water. It was not a time to think of water or food. And the horse seemed to be in a certain understanding that it was a very critical moment for his master.
They reached near Damascus, just outside the city, as the sun was setting. They stopped in a mango grove and as he was tying the horse to a tree, he patted it and he said, “You prove to be a great friend. You have never run so fast before; you must have understood my situation. And we have come hundreds of miles away.”
As the sun was setting he immediately felt the same hand on his shoulder from behind. The shadow was there and said, “I also have to thank your horse. I was worried whether you would be able to reach this place at the right time or not. That’s why I had come to inform you. This is the place destined for your death, and your horse has brought you right on time.”
Whether you run or you stay, it doesn’t matter, death comes. Death has started coming closer to you from the very moment you were born. In what form it comes does not matter. Bertrand Russell has said that if there were no death in the world, there would have been no religion. He has some great insight there: without death, who was going to bother about meditation? Without death, who was going to bother to know about the secret mysteries of life? One would have remained always concerned with the mundane and the worldly. Who would have turned inwards? There would have been no Gautam Buddha.
So death is not just a calamity, it is a blessing in disguise. If you can understand, if you have this much intelligence — that after birth, death is approaching every moment closer — you will not lose your time in trivia. Your priority will be to know what this life is before it ends: Who is living in me? What force? For every intelligent man and woman this is the priority. Everything else is secondary to knowing oneself.
Once you know yourself, there is no death.
Death was only in your ignorance.
In your meditative consciousness, death disappears just as darkness disappears when there is light brought in. Meditation brings the light in, and death is found to be the greatest fiction. It appears only from the outside that somebody is dying. From the inside nobody has ever died, and that is where your life source is.
Chintan is taking his death very joyously, very peacefully. He will die consciously. He is giving every indication that death cannot make him unconscious, cannot knock him unconscious. He will retain his consciousness, and he will have a laugh as he will be dying, because the whole world is living in an illusion.
Life is neither born nor dies.
It has been before birth; it will be after death. Birth and death both are small episodes in the eternal stream of consciousness and light.
Garima, you are asking for some jokes for him….
Giovanni bumps into his friend Alfredo on the streets of Rome, and notices that his friend is looking very depressed.
“How was your holiday in-a Miami Beach?” he asks.
“Mama mia,” replies Alfredo. “It was-a terrible. I go-a to Miami and check into-a bigg-a hotel. In-a the morning I go down to eat-a breakfast. I tell-a the waitress, ‘I wanna two pissis-a toast.’ She bring only one piss. I tell-a her, ‘I want two piss.’ She say, ‘Go to the toilet.’ “I say, ‘You no understand, I wanna two piss on-a the plate.’
“She say, ‘You better no piss on da plate, you sonna va bitch.’ I don’t even know the lady and she call me sonna va bitch!“Later I go eat at the bigga restaurant. The waitress brings me a spoon and knife but no fock. I tell-a her, ‘I wanna fock.’ She tell me, ‘Everyone wanna fuck.’ “I tell her, ‘You no understand. I wanna fock on-a da table.’
“She say, ‘You better not fuck on-a table, you sonna va bitch.’
“So I go back to my room in-a hotel and there is no shits on-a my bed. I call the manager and tell-a him, ‘I wanna shit.’ He tell me to go to the toilet. I say, ‘You not understand. I wanna shit on my bed.’
“He say, ‘You better not shit on-a bed, you sonna va bitch.’
“I go to the check-out desk and the man at the desk say, ‘Happy Holidays, Peace to you.’
“I say, ‘Piss on you too, you sonna va bitch, I gonna go back to Italy.’”
Just tell Chintan: Avoid Italy and go anywhere else.
From The Invitation, Discourse #9, Q1
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